What in the name of Susan B. Anthony is this :: Skullcandy’s “Knockout” Headphones


Ladies, we’ve all done it. You see something pretty in a store and suddenly you find yourself consumed by the need to purchase it, just because it is pretty. The mental chess game goes something like this:

Glitter/Flowers/Pink/Otherwise Visually Pleasing
Function/Usefulness/Quality/Actual Need

Now don’t get offended or call me shallow – I’m not saying you followed through with the purchase. But if you try to tell me you’ve never seen a pair of sparkly heels and suddenly had a fantasy of yourself as Beyonce in the “Crazy in Love” music video, you are simply a liar.

So why am I talking about this on a music blog you ask?

I was doing a little research on headphones this morning, looking for a pair to bring with me on an upcoming trip. I already own a prized pair of noise-cancelling Audio-Technica ATH-ANC7b‘s, which I use so often that I’ve worn through the ear pads. However I was looking for something a little less high-end, perhaps (dare I say it) trendy, as I absolutely despise ear buds and need something that will suffice in the meantime.

In my search, I stumbled across Skullcandy’s newest release, the “Knockout,” which is supposedly engineered specifically for women. My first reaction went something like this:


According to the brand, these headphones are designed specifically “to produce deeper, cleaner bass and very natural sounding vocals that us ladies prefer. It’s science. Isn’t science cool?”

First of all – don’t patronize me. Science is really fucking cool and I’m well aware. Second of all – where is this research? Why have you not led me to your white paper on the differences between how men and women process sound? And why do these headphones basically look identical to the “Navigator” model you have, if that model had been thrown up on by a unicorn who just ate all of the women’s clothes at Urban Outfitters?

I consider myself somewhat of an audiophile – I am my father’s daughter after all, who would have listened to a cereal commercial through JBLs. While the other kids were just figuring out those headphones that went around the back of your head, I had my first Sennheiser’s. So excusez-moi if I need a little bit more information about how you came to the conclusion that this is what I should be listening to, as a woman.

Full disclosure – I have not yet actually tried these headphones. They could be magical. I may never put on my A-T’s again (doubtful). But if Skullcandy thinks I’m going to shell out $100 just because their headphones are highly-Instagramable, they have another thing coming.

So Ladies – resist the urge to purchase these just because they are pretty, and look for a pair of headphones that actually fit your needs. Maybe you’re 13 and just need something to listen to One Direction with, and there are no headphones in the world that can make that better. Maybe you listen to only Skrillex and the dirtier the bass, the better. Do you need closed or open sound? On-ear or over-the-ear? Be an informed consumer and do your research.



Categories: Editorial, Product Review

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

2 replies

  1. Honestly I just want a REAL review the only reviews are of ladies bitching who have never tried them. They also come in black not just flowers so most need to do more research before complaining that they are too girly. Though I agree they look like the navigators which are the same price. If all they are are pretty navigators I am fine with that. But trying to find out if there actually is a difference of finding out what women who have tried them seems impossible.

    • Hi Kim – thanks for reading. For what it’s worth, I have since tried them and found there to be no real difference. Ultimately I was looking for a pair that didn’t project sound clear across the room, and they failed that test. I went with the Nixon Stylus – my A-T’s still have them beat for sound, but they are decent and didn’t disrupt the person next to me on the plane.

      Also for what it’s worth, my point was that these headphones can be as girly as they want, as long as they have the sound to back them up. Yes, they do come in black (I do my research too) but I bet you don’t see those advertised nearly as often. Maybe all the “bitching ladies” are trying to say is that if it’s this hard to find the backup for skullcandy’s claims, you probably already have your answer.

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